Freedom means freedom; equal means equal

Let us be clear: we want the Minnesota legislature to make equal marriage a reality.

“The freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men,” said the US Supreme Court less than 50 years ago, when Mildred and Richard Loving were sentenced to spend one year in prison for violating a Virginia law that banned interracial marriages.

Coincidentally, the US Supreme Court is once more the battle ground for civil rights. A few days ago, at the end of March, the high court heard arguments for and against the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) a federal law that bans the recognition of same-sex marriages across the United States.

While the debate has gained considerable media attention, it is here in your own backyard that you can respond to equality’s calling.

The pursuit of happiness is under siege once again, and after defending repealing the last assault against equality last November, Minnesota needs its citizens to make a final push. We cannot rest on our laurels.

Here in Minnesota, Senator Scott Dibble (DFL) is among those who fly the equality flag. As a representative for District 61, the district where MCTC is located, Senator Dibble introduced a bill earlier this year that aims at legalizing gay marriage.

We urge our readers to lend support to this cause in any way they can. Write your representatives, talk to your friends about it, speak up for civil rights in your classes and with your families. Perhaps even show your support by attending Lobby Day 2013 on Thursday, April 18, an event organized by Minnesotans United in support of the freedom to marry.

We think this should not be a controversy, or a problem. It is merely a matter of justice, of demanding that others respect that which should never been taken away from anybody: the ability to pursue happiness.

In the words of Frederick Douglass, “The problem is whether the American people have loyalty enough, honor enough, patriotism enough, to live up to their own constitution…”

You can find more details about Lobby Day 2013 here: http://mnunited.org/events/lobby-day-2013/

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